Wylfa named as ‘priority site’ for new nuclear power station

WYLFA is to be prioritised as a site for a new nuclear power station.

The site could now house a Rolls-Royce Small Modular Reactor (SMR) able to power one million homes after it was decided it was one of four priority sites across the UK to potentially house the technology.

Trawsfynydd, Sellafield and Oldbury have also been earmarked. 

Virginia Crosbie, Ynys Môn MP, has been supporting the need to bring nuclear power back to the island. The decision sets in motion the prospect of millions of pounds of investment and more than a thousand jobs for the island.

To clinch this SMR investment for Anglesey, she wrote to ministers to push for the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) to release land.

Ms Crosbie said: “I am absolutely thrilled this big step forward has been made and it could make a huge difference to lives across Anglesey for generations to come.

“Everyone knows I have been relentless in the pursuit of this since the last Horizon nuclear project on the island fell through. I never gave up because I believed Wylfa was the best site in the UK for nuclear.

“This announcement is a vindication of that stance and it means more than anything to me because it brings much closer the Holy Grail of jobs and prosperity to our island. That’s what I said I would do.

“There are further steps that need to happen before it is a reality but what excellent news – I simply could not be happier.

“It is also vitally important we get moving to give the whole UK the energy security we need in the years to come. Nuclear has a big part to play in this and in the country’s net zero ambitions. We need SMRs for some very good reasons indeed.”

Rolls-Royce and the NDA have earmarked the four locations to be prioritised for the earliest deployment of SMRs.

Wylfa, Trawsfynydd, Sellafield and Oldbury were matched against a set of criteria that will enable stations to be operational by the early 2030s.

That criteria included: existing geotechnical data, adequate grid connection and a site large enough to deploy multiple SMRs.

SMRs are smaller than conventional nuclear reactors. They are often built offsite then shipped, commissioned, and operated at the location.

Each Rolls-Royce SMR would create enough clean energy to power a million homes for 60 years. Deploying a fleet of SMRs in the UK would create 40,000 jobs across England and Wales, Rolls-Royce said.

North Wales Chronicle | Anglesey